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Fiddlesticks (1930)

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Flip the Frog is the featured performer at an outdoor nightclub in the forest. His dancing and piano-playing please the crowd of critters.


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Flip the Frog jumps happily from lily pad to lily pad, crossing the pond in order to get to an outdoor nightclub in the forest. Flip is the featured performer, and the crowd of critters is happy to see him. As the insect orchestra plays below, Flip dances on a tree stump. Later, he plays the piano as a mouse accompanies him on the violin. The piano cries during a sad song, and Flip has to blow its nose. Flip offends his instrument by caressing its leg with a bit too much familiarity. The piano kicks Flip, and the frog retaliates by punching the keys as he plays. Flip's violent performance leads to a crashing finish. Written by J. Spurlin

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Release Date:

16 August 1930 (USA)  »

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(2-strip Technicolor)
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One of only two Flip the Frog cartoons produced in color. See more »


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User Reviews

The first cartoon released from the Ub Iwerks studio, as well as the introduction of Flip the Frog

This is the first cartoon produced by the studio Ub Iwerks started after he departed Disney. This short also features Flip the Frog, who would "star" in roughly half of the theatrical releases done under the Iwerks imprint in its lifetime as an independent studio (there was at least one short produced that was never released to theaters), there being 38 Flips and about 75 or 76 total shorts altogether.

This first short (oddly, in color, when most of the Flips were black and white) points up the strengths and weaknesses of the series as a whole-technically it is excellent, but the character is drab and void of personality and there is no plot to speak of here. It's a good cartoon and enjoyable to watch, but not truly memorable or special. Ub Iwerks was interested in visuals for the most part and I don't think he had Disney's touch with character or story. When the visuals were paramount and depth of character or plot was irrelevant or even possibly undesirable, you have a masterpiece, such as The Skeleton Dance. When they would be of some benefit, but are somewhat lacking, you get the average Flip the Frog. Given the personnel Iwerks employed-a veritable Who's Who of future talents-and the quality of some of the individual bits and pieces, it's a bit sad when you realize that, with a bit more flair, the output of the studio could have gone from average to good and instead could have been good to outstanding. Still worth seeing and I'm glad that the bulk of it is in print. The animation alone makes it worth seeing. Carl W. Stallings' music doesn't hurt. Worth the effort to see at least once. Recommended for fans of animation and (with a few exceptions) good fun for children.

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